Bethlehem Steel soccer team ran riot in bowling over Springfield on Lehigh Field Saturday afternoon and shared the two points in the American Soccer League race by winning 5 to 0. The score about describes the superiority of the Bethlehem team, predominating in the playing and only seriously threatened once. In the closing minutes of the contest, the visitors launched a determined attack, in which only the clever handling of Edwards prevented them from scoring.
Bethlehem, with a revised lineup, was much superior to the Springfield clan. The day was joyously celebrated for Jock Ferguson, the veteran back, in whose honor the contest was staged. Ferguson's fellow employees in No. 2 machine shop turned out en masse and spirited on by the cheers of his cohorts Ferguson outdid himself with his brilliant defensive playing . Between the halves and after making the soccer ball award, Ferguson was presented with a gift as a token of esteem.
Ferguson and Barrie were the backs in place of Eadie and Allen. The halfback line, however, presented the most drastic shakeup. Bob MacGregor went to center half in place of Captain Carnihan while Rankin assumed McDonald's position at right half. Arthur Robertson, sometimes a forward and sometimes a halfback, was at left halfback. Even with these drastic changes, there was no apparent weakness in the Bethlehem machine and but for an occasional misunderstanding the Bethlehems functioned effectively.
Lawson and Farquhar, outside wings respectively, were the only forwards on the visitors' front lines to test the merit of Edwards. Late in the second half during a determined raid on the Bethlehem goal, Edwards handed a stinging shot from Lawson and a minute or two later deflected one off the boot of Farquhar which in saving Edwards conceded the only corner of the game to the visitors. However, the ball was readily cleared.
Bethlehem's forwards shared in the scoring honors with Jaap, notching two of the five goals, being high scorer for the day. The pretty combination and short passing movement of Bethlehem forwards had the visitors' defense in a maze. First a movement by Stark, Gillespie and Jaap and then Forrest and Goalie, alternating in this form of attack with every man on the front line taking a part had the defense baffled. Bethlehem forwards were not selfish and also kept the wings well fed. It was these deceptive movements that were successful in eluding the backs and with the exception of a header off Stark, every shot directed at t he goal and scored was a stringing drive on which Carson didn't have a chance to handle.
Bethlehem's first score came after eleven minutes of play. It came off the boot of Georgie Forrest and landed in the far corner of the net after a pretty passing movement by Jaap and Stark demoralized the defense. Forrest was free when he took the shot and within ten yard range easily beat Carson.
Within five minutes Gillespie placed the ball into the net. His success was more or less of a solo effort. Cleverly manipulating the ball he eluded the backs until he advanced quite close to the net and then let drive with a stinging shot.
Bethlehem was doing most of the pressing and on the occasional breakaways experienced by the visitors opportunities were lost. The Springfield forwards lacked the aggressiveness of Bethlehem, playing more or less of the old country style in diddling in the vicinity of the goal. While maneuvering for position, the Bethlehem defense closed in and quickly turned the tied of the battle to the other end of the field.
The third goal scored by Bethlehem was largely contributed to by Stark. Taking the ball down the field with determination to take the parting shot, Stark timed the play perfectly. With the backs closing in on him he passed neatly to Jaap who shot and located before Carson knew what it was all about . The visitors' goalie received poor support from his backs.
The restart had progressed well toward the midway mark in the half before Bethlehem could again score. Several good opportunities were lost by shooting past. Finally Stark scored. Thirty yards out the Bethlehem inside right headed, apparently with no intention of locating the net but advancing the ball to the goal mouth. Both Young and Fitzgibbons were near the ball but made no attempt to clear. Gillespie missed his kick and then to the surprise of the spectators the sphere bounded high, struck under the cross bar and landed into the net. Jaap and Stark initiated another pretty passing movement on the final goal, which Jaap notched.
With the exception of the closing minute rally, when Edwards handled twice and the visitors forced a corner on one of their shots. Springfield was never really dangerous. The lineup:
Bethlehem -- Springfield
Edwards -- G -- Carson
Barrie -- RFB -- Young
Ferguson -- LFB -- Fitzgibbons
Rankin -- RHB -- Black
MacGregor -- CHB -- Stewart
Robertson -- LHB -- H. McNair
Jaap -- OR -- Farquhar
Stark -- IR -- Turner
Gillespie -- CF -- Campbell
Forrest -- IL -- Ferguson
Goldie -- OL -- Lawson
Goals: Jaap 2, Stark, Gillespie, Forrest. Referee: Daniel Oates, Philadelphia. Linesmen: Williams and Larkin. Time of halves, 45 minutes.